Belgium has competed at most editions of the Olympic Games after making its first appearance at the 1900 Games. The nation was host to the 1920 Summer Olympics in Antwerp. Belgian athletes have won 142 medals at the Summer Olympic Games. The National Olympic Committee for Belgium was created and recognized in 1906.
A Little History
Belgium, officially the Kingdom of Belgium, is a sovereign state in Western Europe. It is a small, densely populated country which covers an area of 30,528 square kilometres (11,787 sq mi) and has a population of about 11 million people. Straddling the cultural boundary between Germanic and Latin Europe, Belgium is home to two main linguistic groups: the Dutch-speaking, mostly Flemish community, which constitutes about 59% of the population, and the French-speaking, mostly Walloon population, which comprises 41% of all Belgians. Additionally, there is a small group of German-speakers who live in the East Cantons located around the High Fens area, and bordering Germany.
Historically, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg (along with parts of Northern France and Western Germany) were known as the Low Countries; it once covered a somewhat larger area than the current Benelux group of states. The region was called Belgica in Latin, after the Roman province of Gallia Belgica. From the end of the Middle Ages until the 17th century, the area of Belgium was a prosperous and cosmopolitan centre of commerce and culture. From the 16th century until the Belgian Revolution in 1830, when Belgium seceded from the Netherlands, the area of Belgium served as the battleground between many European powers, causing it to be dubbed the "Battlefield of Europe," a reputation strengthened by both world wars.
Today, Belgium is a federal constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system of governance. It is divided into three regions and three communities, that exist next to each other. Its two largest regions are the Dutch-speaking region of Flanders in the north and the French-speaking southern region of Wallonia. The Brussels-Capital Region, officially bilingual, is a mostly French-speaking enclave within the Flemish Region. A German-speaking Community exists in eastern Wallonia. Belgium's linguistic diversity and related political conflicts are reflected in its political history and complex system of governance, made up of six different governments.
Upon its independence, Belgium participated in the Industrial Revolution and, during the course of the 20th century, possessed a number of colonies in Africa. The second half of the 20th century was marked by rising tensions between the Dutch-speaking and the French-speaking citizens fueled by differences in language and culture and the unequal economic development of Flanders and Wallonia. This continuing antagonism has led to several far-reaching reforms, resulting in a transition from a unitary to a federal arrangement during the period from 1970 to 1993. Despite the reforms, tensions between the groups remain, if not increased; there is significant separatism particularly among the Flemish; controversial language laws exist such as the municipalities with language facilities; and the formation of a coalition government took 18 months following the June 2010 federal election, a world record. Belgium is a founding member of the European Union, Eurozone, NATO, OECD and WTO, and a part of the trilateral Benelux Union. Its capital, Brussels, hosts several of the EU's official seats as well as the headquarters of many major international organizations such as NATO. Belgium is also a part of the Schengen Area. Belgium is a developed country, with an advanced high-income economy and is categorized as "very high" in the Human Development Index.
Belgian Olympic Triathlon Team
Here are the confirmed Belgian triathletes to participate at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Click on the athletes social media icons to read more about them.
Jelle Geens Triathlete
Jelle Geens was born on May 3, 1993 in Heusden-Zolder, Belgium. He won second place at the 2016 Huatulco ITU Triathlon World Cup held in Mexico. He's a third-year Promise triathlete, member of the Lys Triathlon Team Deinze.
View full results history of Jelle Geens Here *Athlete information has been extracted from triathlon.org. Rankings and information may change as new data is added or corrections are made.
Katrien Verstuyft Triathlete
Katrien Verstuyft was born on July 21, 1982 in Antwerp, Belgium. She became the National Champion (Sprint, Olympic Distance, and Team) of the year 2009, and member of the National Team. She represents club ATRIAC.
View full results history of Katrien Verstuyft Here *Athlete information has been extracted from triathlon.org. Rankings and information may change as new data is added or corrections are made.
Marten Van Riel Triathlete
Marten Van Riel was born on December 12, 1992 in Loenhout, Belgium. Van Riel became 19th place in the World Series in Yokohama, and in mid-April he was third in the World Cup Manche in China, who demonstrated world class.
View full results history of Marten Van Riel Here *Athlete information has been extracted from triathlon.org. Rankings and information may change as new data is added or corrections are made.
Claire Michel Triathlete
Claire Michel was born on October 13, 1998 in Brusseles, Belgium. In 2012 Michel started competing as professional triathlete. She has been named Belgian Triathlon's Female Athlete of the Year twice, in 2014 and 2015.
View full results history of Claire Michel Here *Athlete information has been extracted from triathlon.org. Rankings and information may change as new data is added or corrections are made.
Since making their Olympic debut at Sydney 2000, triathletes have been pushing themselves to the limit in swimming, cycling and running, with the first to the finish line taking gold. There will be men’s and women’s individual events in Copacabana.
The BTDF is the umbrella of the Vlaamse Triatlon en Duatlon Liga (VTDL) and the Ligue Belge Francophone de Triathlon et Duathlon (LBFTD) and was founded in 1989.
The International Triathlon Union was founded one year later, on April 1, 1989, at the first ITU Congress in Avignon, France. A total of 30 National Federations attended the initial Congress and preparations were made for the sport’s first World Championships to be held in Avignon in August of 1989. At this meeting the Olympic distance was set at a 1.5-km swim, 40-km bike and 10-km run. More than 800 athletes representing 40 countries competed in the first World Championships. Canada’s Les McDonald was elected as ITU’s first president in 1989.